A big compliment was once received by Hardik Pandya from former Indian fast bowler and batter Kapil Dev. In 1983 the first Indian world cup title was held in India because of Kapil Dev and even having mere appreciation is an extremely big deal for a cricketer.
The all-rounder of the Indian Cricket squad stated that legendary cricketer Kapil Sir was by his side right from the beginning of his career. Hardik also said that the ODI cap of 2016 was also given to him by the former Indian Captain.
He mentioned that Kapil Dev told him to do better than him when he was at Pandya’s position by saying:
It was special to receive that cap because Kapil Dev gave it to me and told me, “You do better than what I have done. You will succeed. Keep working hard.”
Kapil Dev also showed concern towards his back injury and even shared a Nuskha for his better recovery, he added:
“Before my back surgery, it was very sweet of him to call and say: “Beta, please aap haldi ka doodh peena. Sab theekh ho jayega [Son, drink turmeric milk and everything will be alright]. Take care.”
After Irfan Pathan’s career faded and since then finding the right all-rounder since Kapil Dev’s retirement in 1994 was a never-ending job for Indian cricket. Hardik being the all-rounder and backbone of the Indian squad had taken all the command in his own hands till now.
Due to his back injury, he is not able to play in the T20 World Cup 2021 but the young cricketer rather being hopeless, stated something very extraordinary:
“Test cricket, right now, I have kept on hold for as long as my body does not allow me to. I am focusing on white-ball cricket because a lot of World Cups are coming and I can provide a lot of things in white-ball cricket right now.”
Pandya also summarised the interaction by saying that he has no fears if he is not able to play the Test Matches subsequently. It takes so much courage just to say what Hardik has said in a go! More power to the young player and wish him a fast recovery.